TRIPPERS TIP: Spend an Afternoon in Yoyogi Park

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By Claire D'hooghe | April 2, 2016

A wall of empty sake barrels in Yoyogi Park, walking toward Meiji shrine. Tokyo, Japan.

Yoyogi Park: a wall of empty sake barrels in neatly stacked, walking toward Meiji shrine, behind Harajuku train station. Tokyo, Japan.

Yoyogi Park is a paradise, a gem of green in the middle of a concrete jungle. If you’re in Tokyo and anywhere near the Harajuku or Ginza area you cannot miss this magical and mystical dreamlike place.

It’s a vast natural estate with open space, trees, flowerbeds, dog parks and a circuit cycling track, and also a place for artistic Tokyoites to practice their skills outdoors. Apartments in Tokyo are small and cramped; there’s no space or patience to practise an instrument when someone lives 3 feet around you in every direction. So you’ll often see and hear musicians practicing in Yoyogi Park, making for an ephemeral and surreal atmosphere while you lay in the grass in the shadows of surrounding sky-scrapers, watching people picnic, party and play badminton.

It’s a great place for cherry blossom season, autumn’s colourful leaf display, people watching, and any time you need to be reminded there are grand spaces of nature in Tokyo. Another bonus is Meiji Shrine is right around the corner from the park (behind Harajuku train station), which, along with the enchanting walk to the shrine, will blow your mind with spiritualism and enchantment.

Be warned: skateboarding is prohibited here and you will be chased out by passive aggressive security guards on bicycles. We can confirm this.

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